State and County Bans on Gatherings and Events
Mar 11, 2020 - Today, Washington’s Governor Jay Inslee announced additional measures designed to slow the spread of the coronavirus outbreak.
His order bans gatherings and events of more than 250 people in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties. The ban covers social, spiritual and recreational activities, which includes, but is not limited to: “community, civic, public, leisure, faith-based, or sporting events; parades; concerts; festivals; conventions; fundraisers and similar activities."
The ban extends through March 2020, but is very likely to be extended. The ban does not include transit, airports, or schools, but the Governor told schools to prepare now for an extended closure, which could be announced in the coming days.
King County took additional measures, prohibiting smaller gatherings of less than 250 people unless they can meet the standards of social distancing, cleaning, employee screening, and other preventative measures. Check the Public Health - Seattle & King County website for exact details here.
The City of Mercer Island was anticipating this announcement and will follow these new recommendations and enact measures in support, which may include further closures of City facilities and increased staff telecommuting where feasible. The Police and Fire Departments will continue to provide full service.
The City has already canceled City meetings through March 20, and Community Center and Park programs through April 12; check the City's coronavirus webpage for a closure summary.
How you can help slow the spread of the coronavirus:
This situation is changing frequently - please check and subscribe to Public Health's website (www.kingcounty.gov/COVID) or blog (www.publichealthinsider.com).
- Do not go to the emergency room unless essential. Emergency rooms need to be able to serve those with the most critical needs. If you have symptoms like cough, fever, or other respiratory problems, contact your regular doctor first.
- Stay home and self-quarantine when sick.
- Practice excellent personal hygiene habits, including handwashing, coughing into tissue or elbow, avoid touching eyes, nose, or mouth; do not shake hands.
- Stay away from people who are ill, especially if you are 60 and older or have underlying health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, or a weakened immune system.
How to Stay Informed
Please remember we all need to continue to demonstrate compassion and care as we navigate this rapidly evolving global health situation. Public Health has also published recommendations for what to do if you have confirmed or suspected COVID-19,or are worried you may have COVID-19.
- Subscribe to Public Health's newsfeed
- Read Public Health’s FAQ page
- Call the King County Coronavirus Hotline at 206-477-3977 with questions